Umbrella group attacks the lack of political will to deal with Ireland’s dark adoption past
An umbrella group called the Coalition of Mother And Baby Home Survivors (CMABS) reacted to last week’s revelations with outrage and indignation. It is made up of the following organisations: Adoption Rights Now, The Bethany Home Survivors, Beyond Adoption Ireland, Adopted Illegally Ireland, The Castlepollard Mother & Baby Home Group, The Association of Mixed Race Irish, Survivors and Victims of Institutional Abuse and The Adoption Coalition Worldwide. It said all of the affiliated organisations unequivocally rejected Taoiseach Leo Varadkar’s assertion that it is too early to consider redress or free DNA tests for the people affected.
“The Irish Government’s instant response to survivors and victims has always been to fob them off and begin an endless series of excuses, stalling, scoping exercises and sub committees, while illegally adopted people and their natural mothers die by the hundreds,” it said to the Irish World.
It said Minister Zappone had already rejected including illegally adopted people in the current Inquiry into Mother and Baby homes and related matters.
“Illegally adopted people are the victims of crime and as such, have a right to ‘legal remedy’ under domestic and international law. Minister Zappone has denied illegal adoptees and their natural mothers this most basic human and civil right, and now continues to do so with the support of an uncaring Taoiseach,” said the group. “Campaigners have long insisted that a national DNA database for adopted people and natural mothers is one of the very few ways progress can be made here but, it has been consistently rejected.
“The victims of this latest scandal will almost certainly need long-term counselling to assist them in dealing with their new situations but there is no sign of any such facility or funding at present.
“There should be modest interim payments to victims – both illegal adoptees and their natural mothers – to give them the time and space to deal with the shock, possibly take time off work and, source local counselling,” it said.
“A national DNA database with free tests for survivors, and moderate interim redress payments and free counselling are the bare minimum required in this instance.
“We have long been calling for a dedicated unit of civil servants, Gardai and social workers with the power to seize records, and pro-actively investigate illegal adoptions, but these calls have been consistently rejected for many years.
“There is still time to prosecute any persons left alive who have been complicit in these inhuman crimes,” it said.
“No-one in Ireland really has the political will to deal with the dark history of our country and the living survivors who still bear the scars to this day,” it added. “Survivors of Mother and Baby homes, forced adoptions, illegal adoptions and a myriad of immoral and criminal activities, are a dying community.
“The policy of the Irish State is currently to carry on denying and stalling every inch of the way, while we die, to reduce the final cost.
“This is nothing but a shameful reflection on our national politics and a lack of courage and political will.
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